I have produced this web site to provide contemporary and up to date reliable information on conditions which affect the heart. The management of many heart conditions has advanced considerably in recent years. It provides information about who I am, but is a reference site to collate and organise information relevant to my work. Others may find this useful.
If You Are Coming To See Me (Either on the NHS or Privately)
We are in unusal times.
If you would prefer a telephone consultation please let my secretary at the Nuffield (Private) or at Musgrove (NHS) know. There are some occasions where it is imperative to examine someone, but often it is not. I have already arranged to do a number of telephone appointments.
If I am not seeing you in person, it is helpful to have as much medical information about you, including an ECG (if you have had one at your GPs or elsewhere) and any blood results (I can usually look those up); if you are breathless a BNP (which is a blood test) can be helpful. If you have a blood pressure monitor, then some recent blood pressures are important. If you have an AliveCor or Apple Watch series 4 or 5 you may have some ECG traces to share. Please make sure you know what medication you are taking.
I have been a consultant cardiologist at Taunton and Somerset NHS trust since 2007. I qualified from Guy's and St Thomas' Hospitals in London in 1995. After a number of training posts in the South East I spent almost 7 years at the Royal Brompton and Harefield NHS Trusts until 2007. During that time I completed a PhD in heart failure and subspecialised in heart failure and devices. I was inspired to become a device specialist by Dr Mark Mason and Professor Richard Sutton. I am a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and a member of the British Cardiac Society.
I have a particular interest in heart failure management, rhythm disorders and pacing, including complex devices. I have a developing interest in inherited cardiac conditions. I am a certified cardiac device specialist and have completed level II training for cardiac CT at Harefield Hospital and Derriford Hospital.
More recently I have become interested in sports cardiology due to the realisation I am seeing more and more patients developing cardiac problems which impact on their ability to participate in sport, or have been caused by their participation. I have also started a project with an enthusiastic cyclist and mathematician looking at workloads and heart rhythm problems on Strava, called Crickles. If you are interested in signing up, please follow this link.
My research is focused on endocarditis, and I have been working in the field for over 10 years now. The group of which I am part has published a number of high-impact articles in that time.
The photo is by Tony Wright, one of our local GPs.
ISABEL - An online symptom checker
ISABEL is an online symptom checker. If you have symptoms and are concerned about what might be causing them, you could visit this website and type in your symptoms. It can suggest what may be wrong with you.
It's impossible for doctors to know about every possible diagnosis - ISABEL is a service I use in more difficult cases to help me get the correct diagnosis. I think it's the best one currently available.
The chart is the total of Covid-19 / Coronavirus cases confirmed in the UK (blue crosses) and the number of deaths (orange dots), comapred with Italy. The number of cases and deaths are beginning to impact on the ability of the NHS to cope, particularly in London, although in Taunton it is controlled.
An interactive chart can now be found on the Public Health England Website. The change in the numbers is now beginning to look much more like the pattern of growth in cases that occurred in Italy.
Of note, the practice of testing has now changed, and people with minor symptoms are (from Thursday 12th March) being asked to self-isolate and are not being tested. However, patients presenting with respiratory illnesses in hospital are being swabbed. The UK has now been locked down (Monday 23rd March).
For far more detail on the Covid-19 outbreak internationally, visit the Johns Hopkins Website.There is a new tracker produced by Microsoft which can be found at: https://bing.com/covid.
Sources of data for the UK: